Raspberry Pi Headed to International Space Station

Raspberry Pi
Raspberry Pi Headed to International Space Station


In partnership with Astronaut Tim Peake, UK Space, and the European Space Agency, the Raspberry Pi Foundation is sending their single board computers to the International Space Station in a program dubbed “Astro Pi.” Two Raspberry Pis will be sent to the ISS as part of Tim’s 6 month mission there and they’re inviting primary and secondary school aged children who are UK residents to write the code that runs on the boards. The boards will be outfitted with a bevvy of sensors included on the Astro Pi HAT: gyroscope, accelerometer, magnetometer, temperature, barometric pressure, and humidity sensors. The board will also have a real time clock with backup battery, 8×8 RGB LED display, and several push buttons. One Pi will have the camera module and the other will have the infrared camera module.

“I’m really excited about this project, born out of the cooperation among UK industries and institutions,” said Astronaut Tim Peake. “There is huge scope for fun science and useful data gathering using the Astro Pi sensors on board the International Space Station. This competition offers a unique chance for young people to learn core computing skills that will be extremely useful in their future. It’s going to be a lot of fun!”

More information about the competition will be released at the Bett Show in London next month.

The Raspberry Pis will be in good company on the International Space Station, which is already equipped with an espresso machine and a 3D printer. All they need now is a CNC and we can formally declare it the first hackerspace in… well… space.

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Matt Richardson is a San Francisco-based creative technologist and Contributing Editor at MAKE. He’s the co-author of Getting Started with Raspberry Pi and the author of Getting Started with BeagleBone.

View more articles by Matt Richardson


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